New social housing coming, says Borough Mayor Fumagalli

VSP officials table PTI budget for 2020 - 2022

New social housing coming, says Borough Mayor Fumagalli
The VSP borough council holds meetings on the second floor at 405 Ogilvy Ave. in Park Extension.
Martin C. Barry

Delivering her monthly report on new developments in the borough, Villeray/St-Michel/Parc Extension Borough Mayor Giuliana Fumagalli said during the Sept. 3 borough council meeting that she was pleased that the groundwork is underway for two new social housing projects in VSP.

Social housing announced

The first involves the purchase by the city of a property on de l’Épée Ave., formerly the Bétonel retail outlet. Another is on Cartier St. further east in the city.

“As you know, the Park Extension neighbourhood is changing at a quick pace and the need for social and affordable housing are great,” she said. “The construction of this new social and community housing will be a breath of fresh air.”

Condo conversion moratorium

Fumagalli said another measure to be voted on that evening, and supported by all the members of the borough council, would abolish the borough’s current by-law which allows a moratorium on condo conversion to be bypassed.

“From now on, it will no longer be possible to derogate from the moratorium on our territory,” she said. “The borough will allow no further derogations. Only the moratorium will apply.”

As well, according to Fumagalli, the borough council has been studying the possibility of implementing a new zoning that would limit the locations where it is possible to list properties for rent on online platforms such as Airbnb.

New social housing coming, says Borough Mayor Fumagalli
VSP Borough mayor Giuliana Fumagalli.

Housing a priority: Fumagalli

“Housing and cleanliness are priorities for our borough,” she said. “As well, we are keeping up in our efforts towards cleanliness. We are working with all the elected officials to develop an all-encompassing strategy for housing.”

During the same meeting, Fumagalli tabled the borough’s triennial capital works program (PTI) for 2020-2022. Among other things, the capital works program allocates $2.5 million to bring the Saint-Michel Arena up to standards, $300,000 for speed humps on several local streets, and $3.47 million to reconstruct sidewalks at 39 intersections.

“This 2020-2022 PTI will allow us to pursue the concretization of our vision and to improve the quality of life for everyone in our borough,” said Fumagalli.

Park Ex park budget missing

During the budget presentation question period, Béatrice Calmel of Park Extension said that last year a meeting of residents of her area was held to determine how a new park could be created near de l’Épée Ave. and Beaumont Ave. She suggested that based on what was said in the PTI, there didn’t seem to be any budget provided for new parks.

Councillor Mary Deros replied, “Most of the money is coming from the centre city and from PDUES programs, which is the program for everything surrounding the University of Montreal project. So it’s not coming from us, but from the centre city. And if my memory serves me well, they are going to start this fall in order to end next year.”

New social housing coming, says Borough Mayor Fumagalli
Park Extension city councillor Mary Deros.

A good summer, Deros said

A senior borough employee at the meeting said that decontamination work on the site is scheduled this month, after which the rest of the work to develop the park would follow.

During the period four councillors’ comments, Park Extension city councillor Mary Deros summed up the summer period with her best wishes to all the borough’s staff who helped provide services to residents during community events over the past few months.

“All the celebrations and events would not have been possible without the always reliable support of our services for the parks, public works, sports and leisure,” she said. “It was all very appreciated by our residents. I would like to thank all our resource people for helping make all our events a success and very enjoyable. The security, organization and respect were all there.”

Jarry Park/Tennis Canada

During the regular question period, Pierre Lamarre of Waverly St. in Park Extension asked why a certain area of Jarry Park near the swimming pool, but away from the Tennis Canada indoor court facilities has been designated for Tennis Canada. A borough official explained that according to an agreement with the centre city (which oversees the park), the area in question belongs to Tennis Canada, although it is ceded for regular public use when there are no Tennis Canada activities.